CLEVELAND — At the Cleveland Auto Show this week, several auto manufacturers showcased new technology designed to give parents more control and supervision of their teen drivers.
It will come as little surprise to parents that the results of a teen driving study by AAA found that the chances of a teen driver being involved in a fatal crash drop 62 percent when they have an adult over the age of 35. Likewise it should comes as little surprise the odds are quadrupled in the other direction when a teen driver is carrying three or more passengers, all under the age of 21.
That's because, as AAA points out, the biggest factors in teen crashes are speed, distractions and poor visual scanning — all things that are likely to come into play when a teen driver's in a car filled with peers.
It is a scary fact of parenthood that your child's most important decisions will most likely be made without you present. That's why auto manufacturers are focused both on keeping your children safe behind the wheel while also giving parents a presence in the vehicle when they're not there.
"It's something that we see constantly in the showroom," said Liberty Auto Group President Michael Herrick of parents looking for the features designed to keep their children safe behind the wheel.
"For example, we have two different key fobs for a car, one of them you give to your child and you can govern how fast the vehicle can go, how loud they can play the radio — it allows you to track the vehicle," he said of the "My Key" technology. "Ford has really the last three or four years paid attention to that market."
GM offers similar technology, as do most auto manufacturers, along with safety features which used to be extras that are now standard with many vehicles.
"You're never at ease when your kids are on the roads," said Cleveland Auto Show President Lou Vitantonio "but at least we have some sense of that, they'll be okay with some of these extra safety features."